Mini Nutmeg-Crème Fraîche Bundt Cakes with Angostura Glaze + a giveaway!

Mini Nutmeg-Crème Fraîche Bundt Cakes with Angostura Glaze + a giveaway!

Happy Monday!

I am super excited about today’s post for two reasons. One: these little cakes are the realization of a flavor combination I’ve been obsessing over for about a year now. Two: It’s November, which means I (along with a bunch of other amazing bloggers) am once again teaming up with Vermont Creamery to bring you some tasty crème fraîche recipes and a giveaway! And this year’s giveaway is AWESOME, you guys. It includes:

♦ An assortment of Vermont Creamery goodies: crème fraîche, vanilla crème fraîche, cultured butter with sea salt & maple, sea salt butter basket, and fresh goat cheese.

♦ A raw pine cake box (with cupcake inserts!) + leather strap handle from PieBox.

♦ A French taper rolling pin from Vermont Farm Table.

Revel Chocolates (including crème fraîche truffles) from Lake Champlain Chocolates.

♦ Vermont maple syrup and maple cream from The Syrup Shop.

♦ A Camp Icon card set from Scout’s Honor Paper.

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Photography & Styling Workshop | Upstate New York

Autumn Upstate New York Photography & Styling Workshop

As many of you know, I spent the first weekend of October hosting a food photography and styling workshop with the lovely and talented Eva Kosmas Flores. Our locale was less than an hour away from my hometown in upstate New York, and Eva and I spent the days preceding the event filling baskets with produce from the farm stands peppered throughout the Schoharie Valley and taking over my parents’ house/cars/lives with props, boxes of dishes, cookware, and food. On Friday morning we traveled through winding back roads and up a steep, lengthy gravel driveway to arrive at a gorgeous renovated barn overlooking rolling hillsides of fall foliage. Our attendees Ashley, Bonnie, Linda, Sam, Summer, Sylvia, and Willow filtered in during the early evening, and we enjoyed dinner on the deck in the (very!) crisp fall air before retiring inside to huddle around the fire (that we managed to get going eventually). (NB: It is best to build a fire before the sun sets and you’re cold.)

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Chickpea & Pomegranate Dip + Tasty Pitta Chips

Chickpea & Pomegranate Dip + Tasty Pitta Chips, from the Top With Cinnamon cookbook

Oh, life. How do you manage to be both crazy and awesome simultaneously? I have spent the past several weeks as a ball of excitement and anxiety. Perhaps because I’ve grown too used to cushy freelance life, so when I actually have to do big, out-of-the-ordinary things, all I want is for a fainting couch to appear in my room and a mint julep to materialize in my hand. (And also for my room to be a completely different room. One with a view of something that isn’t a city street, and that doesn’t contain what appears to be the remnants of a bomb made of dishes, clothes, and cardboard boxes.) Or perhaps it’s because I said “yes” to a lot of things all at once. Yes to shoots in the days preceeding and following the workshop Eva and I hosted in upstate NY. Yes to cutting my avocado food/prop sourcing time down to one absolutely insane day so I could spend a couple days in the Adirondacks instead (worth it). Oh and my birthday happened somewhere amidst all of that? Interesting.

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Pouding Chômeur

Pouding Chômeur

Our weather is currently wavering between summer and fall here in the northeast. I woke up this morning to cold, crisp air on my face from the open window beside my bed. I also woke up thinking about pie crust. (Not weird.) As I lay in bed delaying my morning run, my thoughts drifted to the braided pie crust I made for a Slow Food get-together back in February. (Braided pie crusts and I are not friends, btw. Braiding pie dough is a complete pain in the a$$. [Does that even need to be said? I’m pretty sure everyone could figure that out.] Parts of this one also kinda shrank and sank down into the pie. [My fault, but still, ARG.] And you wind up with an edge that’s super thick and hard to cut through. At least I did. Thank goodness Eva’s salted rose and honey filling was beyond delicious enough to overshadow the sub-par crust.) ANYWAY, I buried my memories of braided pie crust and instead started thinking about another dessert I had that night: pouding chômeur.

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Adventures in Cooking + Reclaiming Provincial: Fall Photography & Styling Workshop!

You guys! I have been so super excited to share this news with you, which has been in the making for several months now: The amazingly talented Eva Kosmas Flores of Adventures in Cooking and I will be hosting a food photography and styling workshop this fall in upstate New York!!

Eva and I began talking about this workshop a few months back, when she approached me with a few ideas for collaborations. If I may take a moment to be a bit honest and real here, that phone call from her could not have come at a better time for me. She and I spoke mere days after I had officially turned down my book deal. I was house-sitting for my parents at the time by myself, wondering if I’d made the right decision or simply backed out of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity because it terrified me. But as she and I discussed possible future projects involving things that I actually felt inspired to do, I realized that I had absolutely made the right decision. Being free of something as weighty and time consuming as that book deal meant room for an opportunity that I was truly excited about: hosting a fun, amazing event with one of my favorite gals ever, with individuals who share our passion for food and photography. I am so insanely thrilled.

This workshop is also dear to me for another reason: it will be held in Margaretville, NY, which is only an hour away from the home I grew up in. (Mom dropping in with a tray of brownies = very likely. Also, we’ll be taking a little trip over to my favorite upstate NY farmers’ market.) And it is happening the first weekend in October, only a few days before my birthday! The workshop will be held in a beautifully renovated 19th century barn that’s located on a 300-acre mountain side. (Read: 300 acres of eye-melting early October upstate NY foliage. Alternate translation: pure fall heaven.) The workshop is 2.5 days, running from Friday the 3rd to Monday the 6th. We’ll be focusing on photography and propping/styling, as well as covering post-processing techniques in Lightroom. Plus there will be lots of delicious food, obv. You can read all the details about and sign up for the event here. And check out the gorgeous video that Eva made above! Please do let us know if you have any questions that aren’t covered by the event description. We hope to see you there! ♥

Also, a big thanks to Meghann Rader for the use of her beautiful artwork on our event flyer. You can see more of her work on her website, and also check out her pieces for sale on her Etsy shop.